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    QUIET External Recorder - Does it exist?
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    How is the fan noise on your DCI 4K external recorder? I'm coming from the Atomos Ninja Blade which was silent and I am hoping to find something that's quiet enough for talking heads and corporate work. The options seem limited. The Atomos recorders, including the Ninja V, seem quite loud. Someone on DPReview had this to say about the Ninja V:

    I found the fan noise on the Atomos Ninja V so obnoxious that I returned it, even though I got it at the special US$499 price - my use case was corporate videos and interviews. This is even with trying the latest firmware in May 2020 (V10.31).
    The discontinued Pix-E5 may also be fairly loud. From Cine-D:

    The fan of the Video Devices PIX-E5 is off during recording. However when the device gets too hot the fan automatically turns on. This happened about 15 minutes into a continuous 4K recording during my tests, indoors on a warm day in summer. In most situations the fan will probably not kick in. When it does it is 30% less loud than the Shogun’s fan.
    How about the Convergent Design recorders? Are there any other contenders?


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    I used a variety of the 7" Atomos' hundreds of times and they would never be an issue because it's impossible to hear them over individuals speaking (especially if you're 5', 10' away). Maybe they are quieter than the V.

    The room's ambience was most likely 9/10 times louder, and a microphone randomly picked up something from that rather than any potential fan noise from the recorders.


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    #3
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    That's reassuring to hear. Were any of the 7" models louder/more quiet than the others? I hate the idea of running a cable just to get the recorder away from the camera or mic.


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    I didn't notice any difference, but one consideration to keep in mind is I would assume the fans would kick in a bit more during longer 4K/60p acquisition for the newer ones (but at the same time I doubt you're filming interviews in 4K/60p).

    You should rent one for like $45 for the day (plus shipping/tax if applicable) and try one out on a potential shoot before buying.


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    Senior Member Peter C.'s Avatar
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    If the camera is 4-6ft away, the subject is miced with a lav or properly boomed condenser, it shouldn't be an issue. But if you have the mic mounted on the camera near the atomos then yes you will hear the fan noise.


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    #6
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    I lived through the years of RED cameras going into JET ENGINE mode for years. And as much of a drag as that was, it really didn't matter for interviews and just about all corporate work. Note that we'd always use a somewhat-directional mic on a boom (eg, a Schoeps 641 supercardioid) and/or a lav attached to the speaker. (On-camera mics generally aren't my thing, and when we do use them, they're on cameras that are quieter than REDs and we're not recording to an external device... think: verite-ish stuff, or some ENG stuff, etc).

    SO ANYWAY, if you're using a mic on a boom and/or lavs, and your camera is at any standard distance (as NorBro mentions), your speaker should be enough above the fan noise to not be a big issue, even with the 7-inch monitor/recorder on your camera.
    ----------
    Jim Feeley
    POV Media


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    #7
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    The Convergent Design Odyssey recorders were silent, with no internal fan. But they are discontinued.
    Mitch Gross
    NYC


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    I remember someone around here stating that the black magic video assist were quiet, but I have not had first hand experience with them. My ninja flame is definitely audible even when recording with a lavalier at about 5 feet of distance. However, the noise is quite constant, so RX cleans it quite well.


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    #9
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    The original 5inch video assist is very quiet, but is also uses old SDXC card chips and it is very hard to find cards that work. There is no firmware update to fix this.

    My 7 inch 3G Video Assist is pretty quiet, but I don't remember if it does 4k DCI and don't have a camera to check it with (no 4K devices at all here).


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    #10
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    Abe has a good idea

    Quote Originally Posted by ahalpert View Post
    Just had an idea - LED manufacturers should make the fans super fast so the pitch is higher and easier to EQ out of the audio later. Is that plausible?


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